Meet Bhopal’s youngest dinosaur expert

Nidhi Vishwakarma

Bhopal: Modern-day children are very clear about their areas of interest and the fields where they want to end up working. This holds true in the case of 13-year-old Ashrut Bhargava, who holds a bundle of knowledge on the diverse group of reptiles of the clade Dinosauria. He has studied in-depth about 700 dinosaurs out of 1,525 within a span of 8 years. He is known to be a walking encyclopedia on dinosaurs.

Books and the Internet

Ashrut has been reading up about dinosaurs since age 5. His father is an optician and his mother a housewife. His mother did not allow him to watch cartoons on TV channels. Instead, he was made to watch such channels as Discovery, Animal TV, National Geographic and others. Since then, he developed a strong love for exploring and learning more about animals, especially dinosaurs. He started reading books, including some popular encyclopedias, such as Nature Encyclopaedia, Fantastic Encyclopaedia, Junior Encyclopaedia, Animal Encyclopaedia, Knowledge Encyclopaedia and other such books.

He has accumulated vast knowledge on the history and characteristics (physical and behavioral) of dinosaurs at such a young age and plans to learn about the rest of the 825 dinosaurs that existed on this planet. He has won several accolades at national-level Olympiads organised in schools.

I’ve great interest in learning about animals, especially dinosaurs, that are my favorites. I want to become a paleontologist and work with Jack Horner, whose work I admire his work and whose books I love. Even if I don’t get into paleontology since there’s only one institute in India that offers this course, I will opt for zoology as it involves the study of animal behaviours. I’ve been appreciated by my school teachers for my knowledge in the field.

Ashrut Bhargava, city’s youngest dinosaur expert